The CFP Board Steps Up (Almost)

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As we mark the golden anniversary of the creation the undertaking we know call “financial planning,” the CFP Board took a decisive step to enforce a real fiduciary standard by requiring disclosure and informed customer consent of material conflicts.

On Thursday, December 12, we will observe 50 years since financial planning took root. In The History of Financial Planning, authors Brandon and Welch chronicled how in 2009, “the financial planning movement emerged,” starting in December 12, 1969 when 13 men gathered in Chicago.

“These men came out of curiosity and a sense of shared mission: to raise the level of professionalism in retail financial services and to make ’financial consulting,’ rather than salesmanship the driving force of their industry,” wrote Brandon and Welch. They said financial planning “discovered and developed a dazzling treasure of potential, which is the heart of our story.”

Yet, much work remains. Financial planning professor and fiduciary expert, Ron Rhoades, underscored this point in an article last week. In “How Financial Planning Can Become a True Profession,” Rhoades set out the requisites in a unique body of knowledge, a required course of study, a strong code of ethics, a strong commitment to the profession and the public it serves and a sanctioning organization.

His conclusion? “I look forward to the day when I am proud to call myself a professional financial planner.”